(Updates with company news, detail, snapshot table)
LONDON, May 14 (Reuters) - European shares were set for a mixed open on Thursday after losses in overseas markets, with a gloomy U.S. retail sales report the previous session prompting investors to trade cautiously.
Futures for the Eurostoxx 50 STXEc1 and the French CAC 40 FCEc1 were down between 0.2 percent and 0.4 percent but futures for Germany's DAX FDXc1 ticked up 0.1 percent. Financial spreadbetters earlier expected Britain's FTSE 100 .FTSE to open as much as 23 points lower, or up to 0.5 percent down.
Japan's Nikkei average .N225 closed down 2.6 percent on Thursday as exporters slid on a firmer yen and renewed concerns about the U.S. economy, while U.S. stocks tumbled overnight as the retail sales report revived recent anxiety about the economy's struggle.
On Wednesday, the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 .FTEU3 ended down 2.5 percent at 831.71 points, its lowest close since May 1, but the index is still up 29 percent since hitting a lifetime low on March 9.
"Yesterday's sell-off hit the major equity markets hard, although with Wall Street having incurred the bulk of its downside in the first few minutes, there is a degree of expectation that the worst may now be behind us," Matt Buckland, a dealer at CMC Markets, said in a note.
Commodities shares will be in focus as crude oil prices CLc1 fell 1 percent and prices of key base metals retreated.
Automobile shares might be under pressure as new car sales fell 12.3 percent across Europe in April, industry association ACEA said.
----------------------MARKET SNAPSHOT AT 0645 GMT----------------------
LAST PCT CHG NET CHG S&P 500 .SPX 883.92 -2.69 % -24.43 NIKKEI .N225 9,093.73 -2.64 % -246.76 MSCI ASIA EX-JP .MIASJ0000PUS 352.96 -2.85 % -10.37 EUR/USD EUR= 1.3581 -0.09 % -0.0012 USD/JPY JPY= 95.65 0.20 % 0.1900 10-YR US TSY YLD US10YT=RR 3.109 -- 0.00 10-YR BUND YLD EU10YT=RR 3.352 -- 0.00 SPOT GOLD XAU= $923.95 -0.16 % -$1.50 US CRUDE CLc1 $57.75 -0.47 % -0.27
* Wall St falls as retail data renews economic angst [ID:nN13429112]
* Nikkei hits 2-week low after US data, Nikon slides [ID:nT269757]
* Dollar, yen near week's highs as caution lingers [ID:nT316903]
* Asia stocks drop, risk bets cut on recovery doubt [ID:nLE394195]
* Treasuries-Bonds boosted by retail sales data [ID:nLE380158]
* Gold steadies near $925 as dollar recovers, ETF up [ID:nSP55912]
* Shanghai copper falls 4 pct after dismal US data [ID:nSHA243274]
* Oil falls below $58 on renewed demand concerns [ID:nSIN381175]
BT GROUP (BT.L)
The company cut its dividend and said a further 15,000 jobs would go after a 1.58 billion pound write down and restructuring at its Global Services unit drove it to a fourth quarter loss. [ID:nLD57930]
KBC GROEP NV (KBC.BR)
KBC reported a net loss of 3.6 billion euros in the first quarter, versus a Reuters poll consensus of a loss of 192 million euros. The Belgian government said it has given KBC a guarantee of 22.5 billion euros for structured credit portfolio.
RIO TINTO (RIO.L) (RIO.AX)
Shares in Australia-listed Rio Tinto plummeted as much as 12.5 percent to a three-week low on Thursday as investors bet the miner would scrap a planned $19.5 billion Chinese investment in favour of a diluted rights issue. [ID:nSYD384381]
CREDIT AGRICOLE (CAGR.PA)
France's biggest retail bank posted a worse than predicted 77 percent fall in its first-quarter net profit on Thursday, hit by losses at its international retail and Calyon investment banking divisions. [ID:nLD142763]
French bank posted a first quarter net loss of 1.84 billion euros. [ID:nL881297]
German government ministers will discuss on Thursday possible bridge financing for carmaker Opel until a partner for General Motors' unit is found, government sources said on Wednesday. [ID:nLD219742]
A German government spokesman said on Wednesday there was no question of a temporary nationalisation of the General Motors' unit Opel. [ID:nBAT002910]
The world's third-largest luxury goods group posted forecast-beating full-year operating profit of 982 million euros, but said trading conditions through to September 2009 would be very challenging.
AEGON NV (AEGN.AS)
Dutch insurer Aegon on Thursday posted a much smaller loss for the first quarter than analysts expected, but it warned of elevated asset impairments through the rest of the year. [ID:nLE385773]
European wholesale banks are likely to post stronger than expected results for the second quarter and beyond, helped by higher pre-provision earnings from strong market activity and better margins, Morgan Stanley said. [ID:nBNG179595]
Germany's largest power producer lowered its expectations for sales in 2009 after reporting first-quarter earnings that beat market expectations. [ID:nLE858745]
Commerzbank's unit Kleinwort Benson has attracted interest from more than 20 trade buyers as well as up to 10 private equity firms interested in backing an MBO, said a person close to the private banking unit. [ID:nLD395239]
The Italian oil company could be considering an offer for France's Maurel & Prom (MAUP.PA), Il Sole 24 Ore said, citing sources close to the operation. It said Eni declined to comment. Other companies interested include China's Cnooc Oil and India's Adani Welspun Exploration and Indian Oil Corporation, the newspaper said, citing news agency Radiocor.
Nigeria's main militant group warned oil companies in the Niger Delta to evacuate their staff within 24 hours following heavy clashes with the security forces in southern Delta state on Wednesday. [ID:nLD801618]
TELECOM ITALIA (TLIT.MI)
One of the options proposed by the government's adviser on telecoms would spin off Telecom Italia's fixed-line network, worth about 15 billion euros, Il Sole 24 Ore reports, citing a document from March that it has obtained. State financing agency CDP would then take a 51 percent stake, the newspaper added.
The transformed financial group reported a first-quarter net profit despite a negative impact on its investment portfolio and said inflows held up in April and early May. It reported a first-quarter net profit of 44 million euros. [ID:nLE483765] (Reporting by Atul Prakash)